MMDA recommends road closures, ‘class holidays’ for SEA Games 2019

Loreben Tuquero
MMDA recommends road closures, ‘class holidays’ for SEA Games 2019
The proposals are awaiting Malacañang's approval

MANILA, Philippines – After imposing a stop-and-go scheme and a truck ban, the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) has recommended road closures, “class holidays,” and a ban on mall sales during the Southeast Asian (SEA) Games.

MMDA Spokesperson Celine Pialago said they were expecting Malacañang’s decision on the proposals by Monday, November 11.

During the nearly two-week games, centerpiece events, like athletics and swimming, will be held at New Clark City in Capas, Tarlac, while the other major sporting events – like basketball, volleyball, and weightlighting – will be conducted in Metro Manila.

She said road closures were recommended around the Rizal Memorial Coliseum, including parts of Adriatico Street and Pablo Ocampo Street.

Since the current sales ban only covers weekdays, the MMDA also recommended banning sales on weekends for malls along EDSA and other SEA games routes, including billeting and sports venues.

MMDA also urged that class holidays be imposed from December 2 to 6 in 7 campuses around Manila, including some universities and colleges.

The agency also requested that the 4 lanes along North Luzon Expressway (NLEX)-Balintawak southbound be maximized, and that the Cavite-Laguna Expressway also be utilized throughout the event.

At the Balintawak Toll Plaza, two dedicated toll lanes will be provided for SEA Games official vehicles. These lanes will be manned by NLEX traffic personnel. 

When the vehicles reach the main NLEX thoroughfare, the convoy will go along the leftmost lane.

Earlier, the MMDA decided to implement a stop-and-go scheme along EDSA and other major roads and intersections to allow for the easier mobility of the delegates. This means traffic will be temporarily stopped while the delegates’ convoys are passing through.

The agency has also coordinated with the Truckers’ Association of the Philippines to prohibit trucks from plying NLEX from 11 am to 6 pm on November 30. Truck drivers will make their deliveries earlier than 11 am. 

The MMDA will also deploy 2,000 men to assist the convoys along yellow lanes.

Pialago said the MMDA expects 20,000 to 30,000 visitors and spectators during the games, which will run from November 30 to December 11. (LOOK: 2019 SEA Games schedule, venues) –


Loreben Tuquero

Loreben Tuquero is a researcher-writer for Rappler. Before transferring to Rappler's Research team, she covered transportation, Quezon City, and the Department of the Interior and Local Government as a reporter. She graduated with a communication degree from the Ateneo de Manila University.